Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Top Ten Tuesday Unwrapped: Books to give as gifts

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's theme was a freebie, and after a few false starts, I finally decided to make a list of books that I like to give as gifts.

AKA: Books I think are awesome.

AKA: Books I hate to lend to people, so I just buy them as gifts instead.

(I have to choose the gift-receiver carefully, because my awesome may not be their awesome. So I guess these are the books I give as gifts in an ideal world.)

(I like lending books to people, on the whole. It's fun to share, and it's even more fun when someone enjoys the book you've recommended to them. And as someone who has dropped many a book in the bath, and carried them around in my bag, I don't tend to worry that they're going to break the spine or anything like that (although I draw the line at used condoms, which my mum, who works in a library, once found sandwiched between the pages of a returned book). But there are a handful of books that I just don't like to lend out. I like to have them with me, just in case I want to re-read them. I worry that they might not find their way back to me. Irrational, yes.)

Here's my list:

1. Into The Wild - Jon Krakauer

This is one of my favourite books. I like to know it's there if I want to read it, but more than that, I feel very strongly about it, and I'd be disappointed if the person I'd lent it to didn't feel the same.

2. Tales of The City - Armistead Maupin

A recurrent feature on my TTT, and another all-time favourite. I have lent this book out on occasion, but again, I'd be disappointed if it didn't go over well. My copy is a little worn these days. :)

3. The Virgin Suicides - Jeffrey Eugenides

I'd had this book for a long time, and I have given it as a gift once or twice to preclude me having to let someone borrow it - terrible I know!

4. For Esme, With Love and Squalor - J. D. Salinger

My copy of The Catcher In The Rye has been missing for a while (I think my brother has it), but For Esme is harder to get hold of, and I like to keep it close.

5. The Plot Against America - Philip Roth

I have lent this to my friend's boyfriend, but I like to give this as a gift just because it's such an amazing book. (See, I'm not a total book-hog!)

6. Naive. Super. - Erlend Loe

Another TTT mainstay. I can't help it. I love this book. The Boy has my copy, but that's as far as it goes.

7. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

If I give you this as a gift, it's normally accompanied by "READITREADITREADIT" in a scary whisper. Just FYI.

8. The Sorrows of an American - Siri Hustvedt

My first Hustvedt novel, and one I shove into other people's hands freely. In the nicest possible way. :)

9. Fever Pitch / High Fidelity - Nick Hornby

You know, when Nick Hornby was good. I wore my copy of Fever Pitch to death as a teenager.

10. Elvis, Jesus and Coca Cola - Kinky Friedman

Or really, any Kinky Friedman mystery. I lent all the ones I own to my dad recently, who introduced me to these years ago. I like to give people copies in the hope of spreading the word. :)


  1. I have to read Margaret Atwood, she's always recommended to me. I watched the movie for Into the Wild; so tragic :'(.
    Great list.

    Katja @ YA's the Word

  2. I have The Handmaid's Tale on my Kindle. I need to read it soon. Great list idea!

    Jennifer @ Feminist Fairy Tale Reviews

  3. I haven't read any of those books.. Hey, gift them to me? ROFL ;D No, but I do plan to read several of them soon! :)

    Patricia // My Post

  4. i've never heard of Kinky Friedman, but based on the author's name, the name of the book AND the fact that it's a mystery, i might just have to check it out. So thanks for the recommendation! :)

  5. Great list! I think we've talked about this before -- but I just couldn't get into the Virgin Suicides (despite the fact that I LOVED, loved, LOVED Middlesex). Perhaps I need to give it a second try...

    And, don't worry, I totally buy people copies of my favourite books rather than lending out my copy. Besides, if they love it as much as I do (which they will, of course), then they have their OWN copy to cherish, rather than refusing to return my copy =P

  6. I always give Jane Austen or Shakespeare as a gift, if I want to give a book to someone. :D People hate it, but some day they are going to appreciate it when they have the time to sit down and read. :D


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